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Page last updated at 15:59 GMT, Tuesday, 18 May 2010 16:59 UK

Chinese oil workers kidnapped in Yemen are freed

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Yemeni authorities have confirmed that two Chinese oil workers, kidnapped earlier this week, have been released.

Local dignitaries negotiated the release, and the men were handed over to the governor of Shabwa province in Yemen's east, it was reported.

The Chinese oilmen were taken after a tribesman was killed by police at a nearby checkpoint, reports said.

Yemen's powerful tribes frequently kidnap people in order to bargain with the central government in disputes.

Yemen, the Arabian peninsula's poorest country, is currently battling a resurgent al-Qaeda and secessionists in the south.

Earlier on Tuesday two young German girls were released in the country's northern region and taken to Saudi Arabia.



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